Zaheer unlikely to play: Wright

Injured medium MI pacer might miss Tuesday’s game against RCB

Mumbai 05 May 2014
Mumbai Indians’ left arm medium pacer Zaheer Khan might not take the field on Tuesday. He is believed to have strained his back in the previous match against Kings XI Punjab. “Zaheer has strained his left latissmus dorsi muscle and has to undergo a thorough medical assessment. He is unlikely to play tomorrow,” MI head coach John Wright said. “It is bit of a blow for us, but we are hoping it is not too serious not only for the IPL, but also his other international commitments,” he added.

When asked if the absence of Zaheer would add pressure on Lasith Malinga, Wright said, “I think he is at a stage of his career where he enjoys pressure and any world-class performer probably flips the coin with pressure and probably sees it more as an opportunity than something of a threatening situation to be in it. He is at a stage of his career where he knows exactly how to prepare. For each game, he has got a pretty good idea as to where to bowl for each batsman and has a full repertoire. He has been magnificent for us for a long time.”

After an unsuccessful UAE leg, the Mumbai Indians found solace at home registering a five-wicket win at the Wankhede stadium over the Kings XI Punjab. Wright was happy with the way the mood in the camp had changed after their first win in the competition. “One of the good things about the victory the other day is that we actually beat the team that beat everybody. It was a much-needed victory. We struggled but it was great to get back here. I think everyone enjoyed getting back here and we haven't lost a match here for a long time, so we want to continue that here tomorrow. We are a very happy changing room and people are more relaxed and more players are looking in form and coming into form, so that is good for us.”

MI will be facing a strong RCB batting line-up and Wright was asked about MI’s plans for such a power-packed batting line-up. Wright said that he believes in acquiring as much information as possible and implementing it on the field. “We spend a lot of time looking at the various statistics and replays of players as to where they hit the ball. There is a lot of information available on those areas. If you look at the RCB batting line-up, it is very formidable. There are two aspects to it; the accuracy of the analysis and the execution of the same. It is all about putting the information into practice in the middle.”
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